pencil tool!!!

anonymous asked:

sorry if this is intrusive but can you please please share the pen(s) you use for coloring and it's settings? I love your art, thank you!!

Hello thanks for sending me an ask! My apologies for replying so late!
I only use the brush and pencil tool to draw and paint. Both of these are default brushes that come with SAI, I just tweaked the settings a bit :^’)
For coloring I use the HSV and RGB slider to adjust the colors i use. It’s a life saver for me! Feel free to send me any further asks!

Top 4 Life Changing Apps You Need as a College Student (With Demos)

Hey everyone!  I was just using each of these apps today to study for my midterms, and I figured I’d share the wealth.  I got each of these apps from the Apple App Store, and use them seamlessly across my Apple devices.  I hope each of them change your midterm weeks for the better! (This is post is kind of long but I made it long to cover what I think are the coolest/most useful things about these apps)

App #1: Notability

Yah, yah.  You’ve heard of this one before.  I’m here to show you some reasons for that.  

Best Features:

1. Annotating and Combining All of the Powerpoints and PDF’s of Your Wildest Dreams

Holy crap is this thing good at converting powerpoints and PDFs.  The transition is undetectable.  Furthermore, if your lecture material was split up into 2 powerpoints that your professor posted, or multiple topics are covered in one powerpoint that you want to separate, you can either combine them into one note, or only import selected slides into separate notes.  Once you do that, you can draw, highlight, add photos and additional typed text…pretty much anything extra you’d need is at your fingertips. 

Demo: Importing PDFS:

Here I’m taking a random web page PDF from organicchem.org about chair conformers, tapping once on it, and copying it to the notability app.  

You literally just tap a couple times and it’s done for you.  You can add the PDF to a new note, an old note, or even take specific pages of the PDF/powerpoint and place only the ones you want into a new or existing note.  It’s almost too easy to be true.  


2. You Can Actually Write Neatly

If you’re anything like me, it bothers you how your handwriting suddenly looks messy when you write on tablets.  Well, notability handles that for you. 

Demo: Writing and Editing Written Text:

Here I’m writing a huge note of what I want to remember with the pencil tool. I picked a red color from the huge color selection, and a rather thin pencil line because it’s only a small side-note.  Of course you can customize your writing to fit what is easiest for you to read and study from.  What happens in the second and third pictures is the cool part:

You can use the scissors tool to put a circle around what you just wrote, and then pinch and rotate the text to change its size and orientation, as well as drag your finger to move it to where you want your note to go.  This way you can write super neatly and just do the moving around afterwords, making sure you can see your text and are comfortable with the way it appears.  You can also re-select it to make it bigger again if you change your mind.  

3. You Can Record and Embed Your Lectures Into Your Notes, While You’re Writing Original Notes OR Annotating Existing Ones

You can do them at the same time.  You don’t have to think about inserting a recording after the fact, or mixing up small recordings and meshing them into one document.  Notability sorts your audio recordings and fixes them up pretty for you, and just starts recording as soon as you hit the speaker button.  Then you can keep annotating what Dr. So-and-So is saying without worrying about your recording being in the right place.

Demo: Recording While Note-Taking:

After you’ve recorded, you can click the speaker button again to edit the recording’s volume, sort multiple recordings you’ve taken as well as name them.  Move the recordings from note to note, etc.  


App #2: Flashcard Hero

Known colloquially as: “How I’m Passing My Anatomy Lab”

Listen here y’all if you wanna make flashcards fast as fuck and learn them the day of your practical, Flashcard Hero is how.


General Overview of Best Features:

The way I predominantly use this app is by furiously making and organizing my flashcards into millions of sections and subsections on my computer, so that everything is findable and easy to access within my flashcard deck.  Then I move them via iCloud over to my phone and tablet to study them on the go.  

You can put pictures, videos, PDF pages, anything on the front or back of your flashcard, and just as much as you want on the back as well.  When you study, you can choose if you want the front or back to show up first, or an alternation of the two if you prefer.  There is no length limit on what you can place on a particular card.  

While you’re studying, the app gives you options of clicking “Easy, Unsure, or Hard” on the card you’re reviewing, so that it will pop up with the ones you’re unsure/really clueless about more often.  This saves my actual ass I can’t recommend it enough.  It has improved my ability to memorize tons of material far more quickly and efficiently.

Demo: The General Interface of Flashcard Hero:

You can see some of the features I’ve talked about.  If you want to know even more of the features, try downloading the app and checking out the “Tutorial” deck it includes on the main menu!


App #3: LiquidText

This is another insanely useful method of PDF annotation.  It is like nothing I’ve ever seen before, and is really good for people who enjoy mind-mapping and comprehensively organizing their ideas while reading!


Best Feature: Organizing Important Bits of Text:

Okay prepare to be very happy about this.  You can literally highlight a section of a PDF, drag it to the side of your screen, and poof.  Your highlighted bit is saved for you to click on and easily access later.  You can even link your highlighted bits, no matter how far apart they are within the document, to help connect and organize your thoughts.  And wait until you see Highlightview, where you can pinch the document so that all of your highlighted portions come together labelled with page numbers.  Too satisfying okay, too satisfying:

If you’re reading something really quickly before class, and you want to easily access interesting portions of a long text during a class discussion, this app will save your life and save you pain in the long run.

App #4: MyScript Calculator

Just watch the demo of this one and prepare to take a huge sigh of relief and awe and happiness.  It actually works and doesn’t confuse what you’re writing, and will do difficult/complex computation.  By changing around the settings to fit the discipline of math you’re doing, this app can save you some annoying typing into calculators and can help you visualize large calculations at a glance.

Best Features: Blowing my tiny, bad at fast-math mind

Demo: General Interface of MyScript Calculator

Just. Yes. Yes good.


Anyway, I hope you guys enjoyed this/found at least one of these useful!  Merry midterms!  

A pen is a witch’s greatest tool.

You may argue, but hear me out.
A pen has endless possibilities. Endless power. As much power as the witch who holds it.
It can help you write spells and rituals.
A pen can write out your hopes your dreams your intentions. It’s ink color changes with your will.
It can bring elements into your life, and it can banish them.
It can draw symbols that mean the world to you and write your signature on the universe.
Pens are a witch’s greatest tool.

Da, da, da, daaaaaaaa…… that’s a little more dramatic than I had intended. I love all these wonderful Sai tutorials that get posted on here but I haven’t seen much attention payed to Sai’s Lineart tool which I can’t get enough of. I’m sure there probably are Lineart Layer tutorials out there - I just haven’t come across one so I’m just adding to the pile. The Lineart tool is so awesome it deserves any number of tutorials anyway. It’s so easy to use, it saves me so much time, and it offers so much control which I really love. Honestly, the tool is so easy to use that this is less of a tutorial and more of just a general encouragement to just whip it out and start playing with it. Yeah. So say we start with a simple line like this swirly-wirly thingy that I drew with the marker tool. Well, the first step would be to create a linework layer by clicking the linework layer button.

There we go. Now, a lineart layer in Sai is different from any other regular layer in Sai and it will bring up a completely new range of tools. I’m gonna briefly go through them but the best way to understand exactly what each does is to just try them out for yourself. There’s no substitute for experience or however the saying goes.

  • Pen - This is your freehand lineart tool and to best honest I don’t really use it that often. That’s just me personally. I have an expensive gaming rig that has all sorts of magic running under the hood but we all know that Sai’s memory management is pretty crappy and I don’t need the lag or crashes that come with this tool when working at a high DPI. You may have a different, entirely pleasant experience with this particular tool but for me, if I’m doing freehand inking, I’d much rather just use the regular Pencil tool.
  • Eraser - Kinda speaks for itself.
  • Weight - This one I do love. Say you’ve drawn a line - or a path as Sai calls it. With this tool you can adjust the thickness of the particular line by simply selecting the brush size and then clicking on the line.
  • Color - Same as Weight. Simply select your desired colour and then select the desired line you’d like to change. Very useful. For the aesthetic.
  • Edit - This one comes with its own subset of mini-tools that I’ll get into in a moment. But this is definitely a useful tool - for me it’s probably the most useful.
  • Pressure - This is the one that adds the character to your linework. I’ll explain further below.
  • SelPen - A selection tool. Pretty standard. Since the Lineart layer works in ‘Anchor’ points (which again, I’ll get in to further down below) I don’t really use this one.
  • SelErs - Selection Erase. Goes hand in hand with the SelPen. I can’t say that I personally use this one  much.
  • Curve & Line - The Curve and the Line tools are the cornerstones of the Linework layer. I’m explain both further down.

The Edit tool, as I mentioned, brings up its own list of sub-tools. And they definitely have their uses. Again, it’s best to play around with them to truly get a grasp of what they do but I’ll just run through them quickly before I get on with the main tutorial.

  • Select - For selecting anchor points of paths. Honestly, I don’t really use this one too much simply because hovering over a point or path and clicking will select it.
  • Move/Add - Now this one I use a lot. Moving an anchor will affect the curvature of your line if you’ve used the ‘Curve’ tool, or you can add curves to a straight line by clicking and dragging in between anchor points.
  • Delete CP/Curve - Kinda speaks for itself. It will delete an achor point in your line. Sometimes this can be useful for making your curves rounder if you’ve added too many points to it.
  • Deform Path - Again, kinda self explanatory. It will warp your line. I don’t really use this one myself but that’s not to say that it couldn’t have its uses.
  • Deform Anchor - See above.
  • Move Path - Instead of moving just an anchor or adjusting the curvature of your line you can move the entire line at once. Can be useful.
  • Duplicate Path - Does exactly what it says - creates a copy of your line. Haven’t found much use for this simply because I don’t particularly like copy/paste stuff in linework. Faults or differences add character.
  • Delete Path - deletes a line you’ve drawn independently of other lines on your linework layer. Can be useful as well.
  • Connect CPs - This is difficult to explain the benefits of. It’s one that should be experimented with. It basically joins lines together. I use it quite often. Just pick this option and drag from one anchor point to another to join them.
  • Pointed/Rounded - See the diagram below for this one. I find it very useful.

As you can see I used the Curve tool to draw a simple curve (left) and then I used the Pointed/Rounded tool to convert the curve into a point (right) by selecting the tool and then clicking on the anchor point at the height of the curve. I find it very useful. Anyway, back to our swirly-wirly thingy.

Because our swirly-wirly thingy is basically one long curve, I simply select the curve tool and start clicking. Starting at the centre point on one end, I click to add anchor points as I trace the shape of the object. Each point adjusts the curvature from the last point. It’s kinda hard to explain verbally or even visually but try it out and you’ll quickly see how it works.

Once I have a line over whatever I’m inking done I like to adjust the weight to suit my preferences. I like to work with thicker lines because they give more room to play around with weight. So to adjust the weight you click on the Weight tool, select a brush size and then click on your line. If only it were that simple in life.

Once I have a good weight selected I move on to the Pressure tool. The pressure tool gives you two options. Pressure for width and pressure for density. Width is like controlling the weight of the line at individual points and density controls the transparency. I don’t usually use the density option. As with traditional inking I prefer to denote depth, shadow, etc. with weight as you can see in the image above. To adjust the pressure, simply select the pressure tool and then select an anchor point. Click, hold and drag to the left to make the line thinner of more transparent and to the right to make the line thicker and more dense. As you drag, a percentage will appear over the anchor point you’ve selected. This can be useful for keeping things consistent.

That’s all well and good for curved lines but what about straight lines? That’s where the line tool comes in. It works exactly the same way except it won’t add a curvature to your anchor pints. Still very useful though. Especially when combined with the Weight and Pressure tools.

Here’s an example of one my drawings. It’s Dark Empress Kitana from Mortal Kombat. The one in red is the pencils which if converted to black would probably make a pretty good linework layer. I’m a firm believer in taking the time to clean up your sketch/pencils layer because it will dictate your entire drawing. The one below in black was done using Sai’s linework layer feature. Although not entirely.

As much as I love Sai’s linework layer, it can look a little too clean which is not great when you’re drawing people. Although, it’s all art so it’s all up to personal preferences and personal style. There’s no wrong way to do it. For me though, I prefer to do skin, facial features, hair, etc. by hand using Sai’s Pencil tool on a normal layer and reserve the Linework Layer for architecture, clothing or any non-organic substances. I inked Kitana’s eyes and eyebrows freehand ( or as freehand as you can be with Sai’s amazing stabilisers) but everything else such as her armour or her fan weapon thingy was done using the Curve and Line tools on the Linework Layer.

I hope this tutorial has been useful. Or if not useful - then at least encouring to try out Sai’s linework layer. It’s such a robust feature that I don’t see get much attention and I can’t even begin to describe how much time it saves me or how much I adore it. If you have any questions (because I’m well aware how unsuited I am to writing tutorials - this is so damn rambly - sorry!) then feel free to drop me an ask here at keithbyrneart.

P.S, sorry about my handwriting in the stills. It’s gotten a lot messier these days.

Ok I don’t have anyone to talk to right now, I just had to be socially trans in person for an hour while signing legal forms, and I’m strung out and tired. SO I’M GOING TO RANT ABOUT CONSTRUCTED LANGUAGES AND MAGICAL SCRIPTS.

Look, I get it. You want your conlang/magic script to look mystical, cryptic, special. You want it to look different than any other language while still looking like a language people write in. If you’re a spiritual person or magic-user this may even be a language you’re channeling and that you believe to be ancient in nature or otherwise pre-existing. But 95% of conlangs and magical scripts look totally fake and made-up, and this is not a judgment I’m casting on their actual grammatical structure or language theory or the languages they were based on. The thing that makes a language look like one people ever actually wrote in for hundreds of years, that makes it look like the letters/characters are all from the same language, is that it looks like a language that’s been written in whatever tools you are claiming or feel like it was traditionally written in.

Let’s take cuneiform:

Looks super-neat, right? Man, who’d ever think of having those wedges in an alphabet! It’s totally different than most modern languages out there and very distinctive, and the wedges are consistent across the letters, so it makes them all look like they’re from the same alphabet. This wasn’t just arbitrarily designed as a font style. There is a reason for this!

Cuneiform writing was pressed into wet clay with these shaped bits and that’s why it looks like that. It got stamped with wedges. That’s how (this type of) writing was done at the time. It’s a technological solution and that’s what makes the lettering get that peculiar stylization. You’ll get variants based on craftsmanship and tools, but basically the method is the same across various implementations. Once someone tried to write that in pencil, you could imagine it’d look different, and you’d see evidence of people’s hand-motion between strokes, becoming more of a tilt between letters.

For instance, English looks like it does, even in tumblr’s sans-serif fonts, because it can be constructed with a pen. When it gets fancy with a variable-width pressure-sensitive pen nib, you can get more complex and flowy, but notice the flow and arc still go with the movements natural for a hand to make:

Originally posted by heaven-knows-im-miserable-n0w

Those little trails between letters exist today because nib pens were drippy and left ink trails. The written language adapted to the tools to incorporate the trails and still make it look legible, and that’s why we have cursive writing at all. This is a simplified history but it’s basically there to make you think about the letter shapes in various traditional ways of writing in English and why it looks like it does instead of like cuneiform.

Which brings me to conlangs. If you want your brand new ancient-looking language to truly look like people have used it for eons, write it out with the tools you think those people would have used, and keep adapting the letters if you find that, say, a brush or nib pen can’t construct the weird arcs and whirls you’ve designed the language to have. Languages by and large are made to be convenient to write. If you don’t know how to write kanji, Chinese words probably look complex and arbitrary to you. But their shapes are logical when you see them written with a brush:

So if you have some arcane-looking swooshy script but it still looks kind of fake, think about where the weight should really be. It should be where the brush presses down heavier and the trailing marks are where the brush lifts up (and usually leaves the paper and ends the stroke). Where the stroke is wide on one end is where the brush initially met the paper. Above, you can see how one swish immediately flows into another, the strokes are like arrows leading across the page when you understand how they’re created. Pick up a brush and figure out an actual stroke order for your symbol. If logically the stroke seems like it’d leave someone’s hand smearing it trying to follow its arc, then logically that symbol would eventually get redesigned if it were in an actual language. Someone would figure out a better way to write it and everyone would adopt that way over time.

So practice writing your language with different tools. Consider a calligraphy course or even just a kit with a guidebook (or youtube training videos!). Written language is a tool that people use, magical as it can be. And if you’re using it for magical purposes such as woodburning it into tools or painting it onto things or writing it onto paper, consider that your symbols will change a bit according to the tools, just like with mundane languages. A wedge-shaped wood burner will get you something a bit closer to cuneiform. A brush will get you something flowy and not super-precise. Pencil will not leave ink trails and will get you something more technical and practical. Your written language logically should shift for that and adapt like a proper tool. And if you do that right, if you really use it, then it will look much more genuine because it will have experienced an actual evolution of form adapting to the physical tools it’s been worked with via.

And if you’re not using it for magic but are just using it for a fantasy setting where people use it for magic in the story, all the above would still apply to them.

Even with just one symbol not meant to be in a greater language, think about the tool you’re creating it with. It’s hard to make a realistic brush-style symbol in pencil. Use the tool that fits the symbol and you’ll produce something much more genuine-looking.

That’s it! I’m not a language expert, this is not meant to be A Real Factual History Of All Language, it’s just a rough primer in How To Make It Look Like A Language Is Actually Written With. It’s not meant to be a critique in whether your magical language is “real” enough or “magical” enough either. It’s simply some pointers in how to make a magical/constructed language that’s actually reasonable to write with and suits the tools you’re writing it with and the purposes you mean it for. Hundreds of years of written language evolution is hard to replace, but I believe in you.

Toon Boom Studio Shading Tutorial

So a while ago, I figured out a way to add shading to animations in Toon Boom Studio (something that I thought wasn’t possible for a really long time lmao). Since others were interested in how I went about this, I decided to put together this quick, simple tutorial on my process!

Here I have my lineart finished and I’m ready to start shading. First, make sure you select the Pencil Tool (This won’t work right if you use the Brush Tool).

Next, make a new color swatch in the Colour Palette. I usually name the color “Shading” so I can find it easier. Click on the little rainbow circle while the new swatch is selected to edit the color.

A new window will pop up that lets you change and edit the color. For this, you can pick any color, it doesn’t really matter. It just needs to be something easily visible in your drawings.

I then draw in where the shading will go~

Here I’ve drawn in the markings using the same method. This helps keep the lineart clean since we’re working on the same layer. Once you’re all set, you can start filling in the colors of the character. I’ve made new color swatches of a darker version of each of the character’s colors for the shaded areas. 

To get rid of the lines, just select the color swatch you used to draw the shading lines and marking lines with, open the Colour Picker menu again, then turn the Alpha all the way down to zero.

Ta-da! The lines are gone and you’re character is all shaded!  :D Hope this is helpful!